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July 27th

July 27th
    But he said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. 2Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)
    It was July 27th, a summer Sunday morning, and it would be unlike any other that I had experienced. The day was full of promise as I was to be ordained as a Pastor at Wildwood Calvary Chapel, Yucaipa. Later that day I would be baptizing those who were to make a public profession of an inward decision that they had made to make Jesus their Lord and Savior.
    I had been excited the whole week before, leading up to this day, as I had thought about the blessing and responsibilities that accompany this gift. But as I sat in my truck, I was somewhat in awe at something that was transpiring: something that was much bigger. I was listening to a friend of mine, Greg Laurie; give a message on the radio that struck a chord that reverberated deep within my soul.
    I had heard Greg for over 30-years giving messages, dating back to another summer day when he led me to the Lord, when I was just 17 years old. But this message was not like any other I had heard before. Greg approached the microphone and began his message with the statement, I couldnt think of any other place that I would want to be&
    Greg wasnt expected to be there that Sunday morning, because he had experienced a tragedy that no parent should ever experience; he had outlived his child. Christopher, or Topher to those closest to him, had been tragically killed in a car accident three days earlier. A father himself, Christopher had left behind his wife Brittany, his daughter Stella. And his wife and he were expecting another daughter in November.
    Gregs message trembled and cracked. And as I listened, my throat began to tighten and tears came flowing. I thought about Job, and how he had lost so much, and I remembered how I thought as I had read that story during my studies years ago, Lord, I dont know if I ever want to be declared so righteous that You would test me in this way.
    I then remembered the promise that is given to us in Romans, that we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. I could think of no other person that loves the Lord more than Greg, and so I knew that God would surely work something great from what we all perceived as a tragedy.
    In 2 Corinthians 12, we read that God had promised that the Apostle Paul would never lack sufficient grace to overcome the thorn in his side, the ailment that had plagued Paul; the one that he had asked to be removed on three separate occasions. And He told Paul that His grace was sufficient for him.
    As I listened to Greg speak, and give witness to Gods love, He shared some stories of Christopher and their past together, and he then turned over the microphone to his youngest son, Jonathon. Between the two of them, I witnessed Gods divine power find its full scope and strength in their human weakness. And yet there Greg stood, serving his flock.
    For to be sure, he was crucified in weakness, yet he lives by Gods power. Likewise, we are weak in him, yet by Gods power we will live with him to serve you. 2Corinthians 13:4 (NIV)
    The short message concluded with a call for anyone who would desire to know Jesus Christ as their Lord, and as their personal Savior, and it was received with the welcoming of hands being raised throughout the sanctuary. Many had come to know Jesus through the saving grace that Sunday, and their names were added to the Lambs Book of Life (see Rev. 3:5). God had used this tragedy in an amazing way, and as a result, many would be led to Christ.
    I turned the message off, dried my eyes, walked in to our church, and received Gods ordaining of me affirmed by our congregation.
    As I lay in bed that night reflecting on all the things that I had heard, said, and was a part of that day, I thanked God for His goodness, His perfect plan and the timing of that plan, and I prayed for my friend and his family. It is a battle that we are in, but we are assured of victory. We just have to decide whether we will enter into the battle, and allow God to use us to make a difference in the lives of our neighbors. Christopher had made that choice, and he made a difference&
    Father Thank You for Your love for us. We are so privileged to be called Your children. And we are equally privileged to be used by You in ministry. Thanks for your gift of Christopher to Greg, Cathe and their family, and let him know that we look forward to seeing him again, and that he is missed. In Jesus precious name, amen&
    Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000